Jason Olson, Deseret News
Sara Hyre performs in Utah County's version of "American Idol" at the SCERA Shell on Wednesday.

OREM — When the Boys 2 Men concert comes to the SCERA in August, six local performers will open for them — singers chosen in a Utah County version of "American Idol."

Wednesday, David MacMillan of Provo, Katie Mayangi of Orem and Sara Hyre of Provo took one step closer to being in that group.

They survived the first of six annual summertime Celebrity vocal competitions.

Wednesday another group of local singers compete on the grassy bowl stage. Six signed up for last week's event. At least 10 will be in the coming competition. Each round is limited to 15 singers.

In all, 18 semifinalists will vie for the top spot.

Competitors at last Wednesday's contest included Chase Hoffman of Provo, Russell Sidwell of Orem and Cody Macphee of Draper.

"I look for a natural stage presence," said Brigham Young University music dance and theater student Rachel Lynn Woodward, who helped judge the event.

Her advice? "Go for it. Really sing. If you're going to mess up, mess up big."

Judge Melinda Stailey agreed but added that she likes to see confidence on the stage.

Local entertainer David Smith, also a judge, said he also likes to see competitors exude confidence in front of an audience.

"They should be reaching out and taking me on a journey," he said.

Last year's Celebrity winner, Emily Noxon, sang the two songs she performed to open for the country group Rascal Flatts in Indianapolis.

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